Military Compensation

Emanuel Solicitors assists Veterans to receive ALL their entitlements and benefits, whatever military compensation scheme applies to them.

The Law that applies to Veterans’ compensation

There are 3 pieces of legislation which can apply to your military compensation claim, depending upon the date on which you suffered your compensable injuries:

  1. Veterans Entitlements Act 1986 [‘VEA’]- applies to injuries suffered before 7 April 1994, or for Operational Service;
  2. Safety Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 1988 [‘SRCA’] – applies to injuries suffered between 7 April 1994 and 30 June 2004;
  3. Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004 [‘MRCA’] – applies to injuries suffered after 1 July 2004.
  • You may need our expert advice because there are many exceptions to this basic framework.
  • To determine which statutory compensation scheme is applicable, it is necessary to look at each veteran’s circumstances carefully.
  • For some veterans, more than one of these applies simultaneously, and, in that case, the veteran may need advice and assistance as to how to manage the consequences, such as offsetting, of any overlapping between the different statutory schemes on his or her entitlements.]

What compensation scheme applies to me? Find out which compensation schemes apply to you.

Step 1: Acceptance of Liability

  • Before you can claim any benefits under whichever military compensation scheme applies to you, DVA has to formally accept liability for your injury or disease as being defence service caused or related.
  • Even if DVA has been paying for your treatment, and has provided a white card or temporary white card, this does not necessarily mean that DVA has accepted liability.
  • The first step, if DVA has not accepted liability, formally, in writing, then you need to claim it, formally. Emanuel Solicitors can do this for you.

Step 2: Once DVA has accepted liability for your injury or condition, what are you entitled to? What benefits can you claim?

Our Table below provides a quick summary of what benefits and entitlements may be available to you, depending on what military compensation scheme applies to you.

Benefit/Entitlement* VEA SRCA MRCA Military Superannuation
Incapacity Payments x  ✔  ✔ x
Disability Pension x x x
Special Rate Pension  ✔ x x x
Special Rate Disability Pension x x  ✔ x
Superannuation Payments x x x  ✔
Permanent Impairment x  ✔  ✔ x
Treatment Expenses  ✔  ✔  ✔ x
Domestic Assistance and Handyman Services x  ✔  ✔ x

* IMPORTANT: The above table is an oversimplification, and, if more than one of the compensation schemes applies to you, considered legal advice should be obtained as the optimal claims to be brought, because of the possible offsetting by DVA, of certain benefits against other benefits. *

Brief Summary of the Benefits and Entitlements under SRCA, MRCA and VEA:

1. Incapacity Payments [SRCA, MRCA]

– compensate for income loss and range from 75% of your pre-injury income up to 100% of your income, dependent on the percentage of your pre-injury hours which you able to work, if any.

– are paid until the age of 65 years. These are the most valuable benefits under SRCA and MRCA

– taxable

2. Disability Pension [VEA only]

– Depending on the severity of your injuries or conditions, the DP will increase

– Assessed under the GARP M

– DP does not exclude Incapacity Payments under SRCA or MRCA

– DVA will offset DP with Incapacity Payments, but Incapacity Payments usually more valuable

3. Special Rate Pension [‘SRP’] [VEA only]

– Tax free pension payable for life

– Any permanent impairment [‘PI’] payments paid under MRCA or SRCA will be offset and will reduce the SRP

4. Special Rate Disability Pension [‘SRDP’] [MRCA]

– Tax free pension payable for life

– Paid in lieu of Incapacity Payments under MRCA

– Requires considered, detailed legal advice as to whether it is more or less advantageous than Incapacity Payments.

– If you qualify for SRDP, DVA will pay up to $2,500 approximately towards any legal or financial advice with respect to whether you should accept an SRDP.

5. Superannuation payments

– Only available if you have been medically retired or reclassified as medically retired

– Incapacity Payments will be reduced/offset $ for $ by the amount of military super you receive

6. Treatment Expenses

– all reasonable treatment expenses and pharmaceutical expenses are payable until the date of death.

7. Permanent Impairment [‘PI’] Lump Sum Payments

– tax free

– to claim PI requires medical evidence in support, in the form of a PI assessment by an expert medical specialist who is competent in applying the appropriate statutory Tables:

  • If you are covered under SRCA, the Comcare Guide ed. 2 Part II is applied.
  • If you are covered under MRCA, the Guide to the Assessment of Rates of Veterans’ Pensions [‘GARP M’] is applied.

8. Domestic and Handyman Services [‘Household services’] &

9. Attendant Care Services

– both require that an Occupational Therapist visit your home, and undertake an assessment and then report to DVA.

– It is quite difficult to get any more than 2 or 3 hours per week of domestic assistance and up to three hours per fortnight of gardening and handyman assistance.

Emanuel Solicitors assists Veterans to receive ALL their entitlements and benefits.

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